‘Great treat’ to be knighted, says Hampstead man

It is a “great treat” to be recognised in the New Year’s Honours, one of Hampstead’s newest knights has said.

Sir Kenneth Grange is delighted to have been made a knight, an accolade which comes almost three decades after he was awarded a CBE for services to design.

He headed up a long list of residents who made their way onto this year’s roll call, recognised for a variety of achievements across a raft of arenas.

Sir Kenneth, who has lived in Hampstead since 1969, said: “I think it is a great treat. If you look at the list of people who come in with you - apart from the usual bunch of obligatory honours for civil servants - there are a few you know a little bit about. They are people of calibre and you are very pleased to be regarded as members of the same club.”

No doubt, this “membership” is well deserved: the 83-year-old’s designs - which include a redesign of black cabs in the 1990s, the old parking meters and most of London’s bus shelters - have become so much a part of day-to-day life it is easy to forget someone once had to dream them up.

Sir Kenneth thinks it is his design for the Kenwood Chef which most people will recognise, but it is his design for the old InterCity125 which he would probably be most proud of.

“It probably had one of the longest lifespans [of anything I have done],” he said.

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Sir Kenneth is one of two Hampstead residents who were knighted - he is joined by Sir Michael Heller, who was honoured for services to charity.

Sir Michael, along with his wife, has run Michael & Morven Heller Charitable Foundation, which supports the arts, education and medicine, since 1988.